The Great Spousal Unit is staying overnight with a client’s pet this week. And The Live-In Niece has been away for most of this week too. That means almost bachelorhood for me. The good part, where you can eat what you want, watch what you want on the tele… not the bad, lonely part. As long as they don’t stay away too long.
It’s nice generally, because absence sometimes does make the heart grow fonder, and because it’s nice to have a break once in a while, even though we’ve been together for almost 20 years.
But there’s no denying the fact that it means I’m alone all the time. Not a big deal… I was on my own for the first two years or so with this disease. But what does it mean to be on your own when you’re usually not? It means two things.
First, it means the obvious: Getting through the night without my BG going low. I can’t say that I do anything that’s way out of the norm. Except that I try to go to bed with a higher BG than normal. So instead of say, going to bed at 150-160 mg/dL, I’m going to bed at around 170-180 mg/dL. The flip side of that safety measure is that I’m usually higher in the morning than I would like (138 mg/dL this morning). And of course, there’s no guarantee that my body’s metabolism wouldn’t kick in harder during my sleep and cause me to go low anyway. But it’s something I know I can do. I can’t bring myself to set the alarm for the middle of the night so I can check how I’m doing. If you’re doing that, I admire and respect your vigilance.
Second, it means that I have to acknowledge the fact that I sometimes rely on my spouse too much to help me through those hypoglycemic moments. And it’s not even those moments when it happens—What Maureen does really well is making sure that I have everything I need to fight off a low wherever, and whenever, it happens. She lets me know that “Hey, you do ______ when you’re going low. Watch out for that.” It’s the general feeling of “someone’s got your back”. It’s a quality that’s incalculable, and I’m lucky to have it.
So even though I have my dog and my second dog (also known as my cat), I’m reminded this week of what it’s really like to be alone and managing the diabetes. And I’m reminded how lucky I am that it’s not the norm.
How about you? Any strategies for when you’re away from your significant other? How does it make you feel?